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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Education Nation

Let's reintroduce corporal punishment in the schools - and use it on the teachers.  PJ O'Rourke

The following is an updated version of a post from 2/15/11.

The Center for American Progress is a  progressive organization that has published a report exposing gross inefficiency in government-run education programs.  It is a return on investment analysis of each state in the nation on a county-by-county basis.  The report describes itself as a district-by-district evaluation of educational productivity, or "how much learning a district produces for every dollar spent."

Among the more interesting findings are that "more education spending will not automatically improve student outcomes," and that there is "no clear relationship between spending and achievement."  Further, students "from disadvantaged backgrounds are more likely to be enrolled in highly inefficient schools."  This is an interesting correlation.  The least efficient, and presumably least effective, teachers are flocking to work at those schools that have the greatest percentage of disadvantaged students, saddling the most needy students with the worst teachers.

Perhaps there is a causal link between poor learning performance and students attending schools with high proportions of poorly performing teachers.  Are parents of these students simply incapable of noticing that their children are academic failures, or is this failure hidden by social promotion?  This policy of unearned promotion seems to be an effective tool to help educators avoid accountablilty to taxpayers.

"States and districts fail to evaluate the productivity of schools and districts.  While the nation spends billions of dollars on education, only two states, Florida and Texas, currently provide annual school-level productivity evaluations, which report to the public how well funds are being spent at the local level."  The people and government entities being paid to provide our educational product are accountable to those who pay them in only two of fifty states.  Parents are getting the green weenie.

For anyone who does not recognize that tenure essentially means lifetime employment regardless of unproductive or incompetent performance, this chart might be enlightening.  It illustrates the process required to fire a teacher in New Jersey.  Perhaps there is a correlation between intelligence as reflected by academic achievement and college major.

This chart shows that among the ten listed majors, education majors score most poorly on standardized tests.  Hmmm...the least intellectually gifted among us are striving to get government positions from which they virtually cannot be fired for being shiftless, irresponsible, or inept.  These jobs include lavish pensions and benefits that are guarantied by taxpayers.  Speaking of the green weenie.

May your gods be with you.

1 comment:

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